Thank you so much for reading Help Me Remember. It felt SO good writing a little of a suspense plotline again. I have missed it so much and getting to bring back the Salvation series boys was even more amazing. Brielle and Spencer really felt so beautiful as I wrote it. I just wanted to give a little bit more at the end, and of course, share it with you.
Here is a special Bonus Scene with our amazing first couple from Rose Canyon!
“Sweetheart, are you ready?” I call to Brielle, who is now thirty minutes late.
She said that about a million seconds ago, but I can’t rush her because she’s been an absolute nightmare since we found out she was pregnant.
Not that it’s been easy on her. She was insanely sick the first trimester, and despite trying to convince herself that the second trimester would be better, it hasn’t been.
She exits the hotel bathroom, her long blonde hair is pulled up in some knot with braids and her long black dress hugs every gorgeous inch of her.
“You look stunning.” I can’t stop myself from walking to her and pulling her to my chest.
“You are a blind idiot.”
“Love is blind, isn’t it?”
She smiles. “It is, but not this blind.”
“Brie, you are gorgeous. Every man in that place is going to be insanely jealous because you’re with me.”
“Yes, I’m sure all the sexy movie stars are going to think, ‘Hey, see that whale, I wish she washed up on my shore.’”
I lift her chin, waiting for her eyes to meet mine. “They will, and you’re not a whale.” I kiss her before she can give me any more crap about her size. She’s barely gained anything, and if you looked at her from the back, you wouldn’t even know she’s pregnant.
However, last time I said that, she went off about how I thought she was fat. Therefore, I will keep my mouth shut.
Brielle sighs and then rests her hand on my chest. “Are you sure you don’t want to leave me here? I don’t mind. No one wants a date who may have to run out to puke.”
As if I would ever leave her. “Don’t be ridiculous.”
“Spencer, it’s your big night. Like the biggest one ever, and I don’t want to ruin it.”
I let out a long breath. “When you said you loved me was the biggest night of my life. The first time I proposed to you was what I thought was the biggest night of my life. Then it was your memory coming back and you returning to me. Marrying you was then my biggest night. And when we have our little monster, that will be the biggest night. This is a drop in the bucket, my love. Everything with you is what matters.”
A tear trickles down her cheek, and I catch it with my thumb. “Now I’m going to be all splotchy,” Brielle whines.
“You’re perfect, but you are going to make us late, so we need to get a move on.”
“Okay, let’s go then.”
We exit the hotel in Beverly Hills and find rows of limos waiting out front. I tell the valet my name, and he goes off to find our driver. The studio went all out since the film is nominated for Best Original Screenplay, which I wrote, Best Picture, plus almost all the major actors are as well.
After everything that went down in the last few years, I promised Brielle that I would put aside my investigative journalism. Not that I didn’t love it, but it meant being away for long periods of time in locations that would have her worrying for my safety.
We’d been through enough trauma as it was.
Still, I didn’t want to give up writing, so I started recording our story. On a whim, I sent it to a buddy for some critique, and five days later, I was meeting with a producer to make it a screenplay.
Five drafts later, the studio bought the rights to Help Me Remember and then it became a major motion picture.
“Are you nervous?” Brie asks as we get into the limousine.
“I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t.”
She smiles. “I know that you will never accept this, but it is really amazing we’re here, on our way to the Academy Awards. It’s like you can’t do anything without being the best.”
“I’m not going to win.”
“You might, and no matter what, you won in my eyes.”
“Promise me you will be cool when you see Noah Frazier or Jacob Arrowood,” I plead.
The lead actor, Noah Frazier, who played me, is nominated for Best Actor, and Brielle is obsessed with him. I have to remind her that he is not, in fact, me. Therefore, she can’t kiss or hug him just because he said all the shit I did in real life.
“I am always cool, Spencer Cross. It’s you who gets all tongue-tied.”
The ride over is almost nothing and before we know it, the driver is instructing us on the procedure. He will bring us to the beginning of the red carpet where we will walk, pose for photos, and speak to the press.
As if anyone gives a shit about the writer.
Once the driver pulls to a stop, the studio’s publicist is there, pulling our door open for us. “Hello, Mr. and Mrs. Cross. Did everything go okay so far?”
I nod. “It’s been wonderful, Catherine, thank you.”
“Good. You look amazing, Brie,” she says, handing her a pamphlet. “I have all the information you’ll need about the event here. Where you need to go, who is looking for you, as well as the afterparty information. It’s small enough to slip into your clutch. By the way, Jackson says hello. If you see him, just wink as he can’t talk to anyone since he’s on duty.”
“He’s here?” Brie asks with obvious affection. Catherine Cole is married to Jackson.
“He’s with Noah and Jacob, but there are several Cole Security guys here. I always have extra security when one of my clients is attending an event like this.”
“I don’t know how you do it,” Brie says. “I would be such a mess being around those guys.”
I shoot her a look. “I thought you were cool?”
Catherine grins. “My job is to see them as normal people and fix their issues, so it takes that thrill away a bit. You should get going, stick to the schedule.”
Brielle grips my arm. “Can you believe this, babe? We are walking the red carpet because you are so damn amazing and talented. I am so proud. So freaking proud.”
I love her excitement, but I’m trying not to focus on all this. I never wanted a life in Hollywood. I wanted to follow stories and unearth secrets that people thought should stay buried. In a way, I’m still doing that, it just isn’t journalism. Since Help Me Remember, I have written three more screenplays that are currently optioned. Whether they ever see the light of day is out of my control. Just like winning tonight.
“Let’s follow our schedule and not think about what comes later.”
She smiles up at me. “Okay. Let’s enjoy all of it and pray I don’t puke on your shoes.”
God, I love her. I lean down and kiss the top of her head. “I love you, Brielle.”
“I love you too.”
We walk down the red carpet, no one really caring about us until Noah walks over. Then the entire mood shifts. Cameras click like crazy as he shakes my hand, and Kristin and Brielle introduce themselves.
“Big night,” Noah says.
“It is, but . . . you’re used to it.”
He laughs. “Not these categories.”
“Any tips on how to get through it?” I ask.
“Alcohol and pretending you aren’t fazed by any of it, which is a lie.”
Catherine scurries toward us. “Hey, you two, off to the interviews. If you see Jacob, tell him I’m going to kill him,” she says without her smile faltering.
“That’s our cue. I’ll see you in there.”
We are definitely not seated close to each other, but I nod anyway as though it could happen. Brielle and I make it through the next hour, meeting all kinds of people in the industry and giving the same version of interviews. So many express their enjoyment of the story, which gives me a lot of joy.
Inside it’s so much bigger than it appears on television. We are ushered to our seats, which are around the other no-name members of the film, not close to the stage as we aren’t A-list celebrities. The lights flicker, and it begins.
Brielle grips my hand and places them on my leg. I look over with a brow raised.
“Your leg was bouncing.”
I hadn’t even realized, but Best Original Screenplay is next. I’m nervous and excited. I want to win. Not because I really do like trophies but because it’s about us. It’s the story of loving someone and having to do what’s best for them, even when it hurts you. It’s finding each other, even when you weren’t sure it would happen.
But whether I win or lose, it doesn’t matter because Brielle is the prize, and I’ve already won her. She’s everything good in this world.
Her fingers tighten, and I smile over at her as Eli Walsh walks onto the stage. “It is my great honor to present this award tonight. The power of a good script can take a film to another level. One that captures hearts, reminds us that love is all that matters, scare the ever living—you know—out of us, or take you to another world where you have to fight demons. Here are tonight’s nominees.”
The music cues up, and the clips roll. The third one that plays is Help Me Remember with, “Screenplay written by Spencer Cross,” announced at the end.
I turn to my wife. “No matter what . . .”
“You are the most magnificent man, and this changes nothing.”
I nod. “I love you.”
“I love you.”
The final clip ends, and Eli lifts the envelope. “And the Academy Award goes to . . .” I hold my breath, working hard to keep my face impassive so I don’t look like one of those assholes on television who is upset. “Spencer Cross for Help Me Remember!”
Clapping erupts around me, but I swear I don’t hear it. I look to Brielle, who has the brightest smile on her lips and tears in her eyes. I cup her cheeks, pulling her lips to mine. “Go!” she says with a laugh.
Right. Shit. I have to go up there.
I stand and make my way over, the director of the film shakes my hand, and one of the other nominees stands to congratulate me. When I get to the front, Noah is there and he claps me on the back. I climb the steps and meet Eli as he hands me the trophy. “Congrats, man.”
“Good luck on the speech.”
I have to speak. Yeah, words. Okay. I let out a deep breath and look to where the cameraman is holding the green card.
“I honestly didn’t think I would be standing up here right now. When I wrote Help Me Remember, I was coming out of a dark place. My wife, Brielle, had suffered a head injury, and I lost her for a period of time. I needed to work through it, and writing was the logical answer. I have so many people to thank for this, including the director, Thomas Wright. The producer, Michael Williams, and the amazing cast, crew, and everyone who brought the film to life. I’d like to thank my friends back home, Emmett, Holden, and, of course, Isaac, for who this is in memory of.” I look to the seats and find her. Our eyes stay connected as I give her my heart. “Most of all, I need to thank my breathtakingly beautiful wife, Brielle. When I was lost, you found me and made me whole. You are the best part of me, and I never knew someone could love another the way I love you. You are my world, and this is all for you. I love you.”
Tears fall down those perfect cheeks, and I don’t think that any man is as lucky as I am.
Thank you again for reading this book I am already working on book two (Give Me Love) and I’m obsessed with this couple. Emmett is so broody. Blakely is his equal in every way. They have the most inconvenient marriage of convenience ever.
It’s so fun to write and I am loving every second. We will learn so much more about what is going on in Rose Canyon and be ready for the next ride!
Also … if you loved Quinn, Mark, Charlie, and Jackson, they are from the Salvation Series which is available Free in Kindle Unlimited. And Devney is from the Arrowood Brothers. You can read all of those books while we wait for Emmett. I’m sure they’ll make more appearances!